There are certain things we’ve come to expect from US presidential inaugurations: motivational speeches, popstars performing and lots of custommade designer looks. But this year, the most talked-about parts of President Joe Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris’ swearing-in didn’t have much to do with them at all. Second only to that viral photo of Bernie Sanders in handmade mittens and Amanda Gorman’s moving poem was Ella Emhoff, Kamala Harris’ 21-year-old stepdaughter, who, despite Jennifer Lopez in custom white Chanel and Lady Gaga in Schiaparelli Haute Couture, completely stole the show.
Wearing a plaid Miu Miu coat with embellished shoulders and a white peter-pan collar, Emhoff, a student at New York’s prestigious Parsons School of Design, instantly caught the attention of the millions of people watching, who commended her for her perfectly coordinated outfit, which effortlessly managed to outshine both popstars and politicians. Not only did Emhoff catch the attention of prestigious fashion journalists, but, it turns out, she was also noticed by modelling scouts.
IMG Models, the biggest modelling and talent agency in the world, which represents the likes of Bella and Gigi Hadid to Chrissy Teigen, announced yesterday that not only have they signed 22-year-old Gorman to their books, but Emhoff, too.
IMG Models president Ivan Bart told the New York Times that brands are attracted to authenticity, and consumers crave it. “It’s not really about shape, size or gender any more,” he said. “Ella communicates this moment in time. There’s a cheekiness and a joy she exudes.”
On her Instagram account, which now boasts a following of 335k, Emhoff, who has her own knitwear line, regularly posts about slow fashion and supporting the queer community, specifically advocating for the protection of trans women. She told the NY Times that she sees her opportunity with IMG as a chance to “do some good” and “share a lot of things I really care about.”
A Miu Miu wearing trans and queer activist routinely popping up at the White House? Now that’s something we can get behind.